As I write this the fireworks for Oil City, Pennsylvania's "First Night" celebration are going off. As I wrote to Claudia Kehl a few hours ago, work has really kept me tied down the past two months, so it has been hard to keep up with personal e-mails and to even visit my own web site. Well, I have a few days off around New Years Day, so I took the time to check each page of the Tavern tonight and visit the Guestbook kept on the Dreamhost site. When you operate a site like this one, you often wonder if the subject, or any of their family members or friends, ever stop by to visit. The Tavern has had its Guestbook signed by two of Mary Stuart Masterson's old friends, one from high school in Houston, Texas, and another who signed anonymously on 12/12/2002. We appreciate the comments this old friend of Ms. Masterson left on the Guestbook.
Claudia Kehl wrote to me about "Frame 312," a play starring Carlin Glynn, Mary Stuart Masterson's mother that was recently performed in Houston, Texas, the Masterson family's hometown. The play was directed by Pete Masterson, Sr., MSM's father. Claudia found some links to articles and reviews published in the HOUSTON CHRONICLE, and we present the links below.
I'm glad Claudia reminded me about the HOUSTON CHRONICLE article, because that newspaper frequently writes about the professional activities of the Masterson family, and sometimes writes about other family members still residing in Houston. Houston is very proud of the achievements of the Mastersons and this is frequently reflected in the articles in the CHRONICLE.
Claudia, who is now living in 2003 over there in Switzerland, sent me some links with articles and photos of Mary Stuart Masterson's work for the Rainforest Alliance. Ms. Masterson's name was listed as a director of that environmental organization in 2000, and there is an article about it in the FYI Archives somewhere. MSM attended a dinner for the Rainforest Alliance and was photographed with actor Cary Elwes ("Men in Tights" and "Glory"). Links to the article and photo are below.
Most of Ms. Masterson's recent film works have been independent films. As such, their release to theaters is usually limited, and they are almost impossible to view at a suburban mutiplex. Typically, they are released at independent film festivals, such as Robert Redford's SUNDANCE FESTIVAL, and other such film festivals in the USA and other countries, and then are mostly shown in single screen specialty or art theaters. Most of MSM's independent films do get to video and DVD. "DOGTOWN," "THE BOOK OF STARS," and "THE FLORENTINE" were very easy to obtain on VHS, and "DOGTOWN" was available for rental in my area, which is not a major urban area. The recent Jodie Foster independent, "THE DANGEROUS LIVES OF ALTAR BOYS," starring MSM's co-star from "THE BOOK OF STARS," Jena Malone, is available in the sparsely-populated Venango County, Pennsylvania area with most of the video stores making several copies available. So, just because "LEO" may not make the money of a Harry Potter movie, you can not only see it, but also own it. Just keep your eyes open, search the Internet, and you can find all of them.
With Mary Stuart Masterson's pending 2003 return to Broadway in "NINE," and the release of the film "LEO" due in February 2003, there will be a lot for all of us to read about, and many of us will be seeking tickets to both. "LEO" has been receiving some good notices, as has "WEST OF HERE," another recently released independent film starring MSM. This should prove to be an interesting year ahead.
Claudia sent me some great e-mails about "Nine," the upcoming Broadway production with Mary Stuart Masterson in a starring role. She is to play the wife of Antonio Banderas. "Nine" is based on Italian filmmaker Federico Fellini's "8 1/2." The plot involves an Italian filmmaker named Guido Contini. Contini tries to celebrate a recent success with a vacation, but ends up rehashing all of his past relationships with women.
"Nine" will open at the Eugene O'Neill Theater on April 10, 2003 and run until June 29, 2003. Preview performances will begin on March 11, 2003. Claudia supplied some good links about the upcoming Broadway performance by Ms. Masterson, and they can be accessed by clicking on the links below.
Leave it to the intrepid Claudia Kehl to find some great British reviews of the most recently released (although limited release) of Mary Stuart Masterson's films. This one is "Leo," formerly titled "Leopold Bloom," and stars Joseph Fiennes, Elisabeth Shue, Sam Shepard, and Dennis Hopper. The London links found by Claudia are quite favorable, and are very impressed with the acting, particularly that of Elisabeth Shue, who is the actual female lead in the movie.
There is a way to save the film trailer to your harddrive so you can replay it whenever you feel like it. If you downloaded the trailer to view it while on the site, it will be in your TEMPORARY INTERNET FILES folder. You only need to find the icon that matches the movie, and check the URL and the date viewed. Check the size of the file in the TEMPORARY INTERNET FILES folder. Sometimes the shortcut to a movie trailer has the same icon as the trailer itself, and will only be about 2kb, while the trailer will be around 1000kb. You RIGHT CLICK on the icon, and save it to a folder that you make in order to save your trailers. The command on the Menu Box you select should be the "SAVE AS" command. Name the trailer folders by the film name, the artist name, or some other easy way to remember the name of the folder. I found this could be done when I saved trailers from the HBO miniseries "BAND OF BROTHERS" from the HBO site. You can save them for your own use on your own computer. You cannot sell them, or give them away to others, as that would violate copyright laws. HBO and Tom Hanks shouldn't get mad at me anyway, as I just bought the whole boxed set of the cassettes!
I also received another e-mail about Mary Stuart Masterson winning the competition to be cast as Luisa in "Nine," a major Broadway production. Here's hoping that there will be a few great reviews posted in here after the first of the new year, and maybe some items about a certain actress winning a Tony Award!
Our resourceful Swiss correspondent, Claudia Kehl, found some nice pictures from "The Book of Stars," and this is the best one of Mary Stuart Masterson. It actually shows what is "The Book of Stars."
When you access the link provided by Claudia, you can only see the thumbnails of the photos. These photos are protected by a strong copyright warning and cannot be reproduced, Period. I paid for a subscription to the service, but, as far as I could see, the subscriptions are for viewing only, and not for any kind of reproduction, with or without the watermark on the photo. The thumbnails are just smaller versions of the photos, and you can see all of them. I would love to display one of MSM and her brother with this news item, as there are several cute pictures of those two, but it just isn't possible. You can still enjoy them in thumbnail format, but no one can display them, and I can see why. They are EXCELLENT examples of portrait photography, and the work belongs to the artist, who deserves to be paid for it.
While this first directorial effort by Pete Masterson, brother of Mary Stuart Masterson, is only in limited release, some of the people who have seen it have taken the time to access the Internet Movie Database (IMDB)Web site's page for "West of Here," and entered comments about the movie. IMDB has produced statistics that give "West of Here" a rating of 8.2 out of 10, a strong favorable rating. Only the group Teenage Boys gave the movie mediocre ratings. Every other demographic group rated "West of Here" very high. Again, this is an independent film in limited release, so while millions may see "Spiderman" on one weekend, only a few thousand, or even hundreds, might see "West of Here" in a theater that emphasizes art and independent films.